Sunday, June 5, 2011

Chinese chicken and broccoli

Chicken and broccoli is a Chinese restaurant staple. It was also one of may absolute favorite dishes growing up. My sister and I ordered it from our local Chinese delivery place so much that we just had to give them our address and they knew what we wanted. This recipe from the food network does a really good job of replicating restaurant quality chicken and broccoli. It has a flavorful and rich brown sauce which is absolutely delicious. I was very happy with how this turned out.

On the side I decided to make some fried rice, using another recipe from the food network. This didn't come out as well as I'd hoped. The rice was mushier than I would have liked. The culprit may have been the store-brand long-grain white rice I used. A better quality rice may have come out better. I think this recipe is definitely worth another try.

Chicken and Broccoli
Ingredients:
1 pound chicken breast (about 2 breasts), cubed
3 scallions, whites only, thinly sliced on an angle
2 cloves garlic, minced
1-inch piece peeled fresh ginger, minced
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon, plus 1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon dry sherry
1 tablespoon dark sesame oil
About 1/3 cup water
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
5 to 6 cups broccoli, trimmed sliced stalks and medium florets (keep the 2 cuts separate)
3/4 to 1 teaspoon red chili flakes, optional
1 tablespoon hoisin sauce

Directions:
1. In a medium bowl, toss the chicken with the scallion whites, about half the garlic and ginger, the soy sauce, sugar, 1 teaspoon of the cornstarch, 1 teaspoon of the salt, the sherry, and the sesame oil. Marinate at room temperature for 15 minutes.
2. Mix the remaining cornstarch with 1/3 cup water.
3. Heat a large nonstick skillet over high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of the oil and heat.
4. Add the broccoli stems, and stir-fry for 30 seconds. Add the florets and the remaining garlic, ginger, 2 tablespoons of water, and season with 1/4 teaspoon salt, and pepper. Stir-fry until the broccoli is bright green but still crisp, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a plate.
5. Get the skillet good and hot again, and then heat 2 more tablespoons oil. Add the chicken and chili flakes if using. Stir-fry until the chicken loses its raw color and gets a little brown, about 3 minutes.
6. Add the hoisin sauce, return the broccoli to the pan and toss to heat through.
7. Stir in the reserved cornstarch mixture and bring to a boil to thicken. Add more water if need to thin the sauce, if necessary. Taste and season with salt and pepper, if you like.

Fried Rice
Ingredients:
1/3 cup plain vegetable oil, like soy, corn, or peanut
1/3 pound black forest ham, diced, or about 2 cups cooked, cubed or shredded meat (I chose to leave this out since I don't eat pork)
1 onion, diced
Salt and pepper
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped
3 whole scallions, thinly sliced on the bias, white and green separated
1 1/3 cups (6 ounces) medley frozen corn, peas, carrots
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
4 cups cold cooked long-grain rice, white or jasmine rice, grains separated

Directions:
1. Heat a large heavy-bottomed nonstick skillet over high heat. When hot add 1 tablespoon of the oil. Add the ham and cook stirring occasionally until lightly browned.
2. Add the onions to the pan, season with salt and pepper, and cook for 1 to 2 minutes until onion is fragrant.
3. Add the garlic, ginger, and scallion whites and stir-fry until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
4. Add the frozen vegetables. Cook until just defrosted but still crisp. Transfer contents of the skillet to a large bowl.
5. Return the pan to the heat and add 2 more tablespoons of oil. Add the eggs and season with salt and pepper. Stir the eggs constantly and cook until almost set but still moist, then transfer egg to the bowl. Break the eggs up with a wooden spoon or spatula.
6. Return the pan to the heat and add the remaining oil. Add the rice to the pan and use a spoon to break up any clumps. Season with salt and pepper and stir-fry the rice to coat evenly with oil. Stop stirring, and then let the rice cook undisturbed until its gets slightly crispy, about 2 minutes. Stir the rice again, breaking up any new clumps.
7. Add the scallion greens. Transfer to the bowl.
8.Stir all the ingredients together with the rice, taste and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper, if necessary. Serve.

The results:

2 comments:

  1. Looks wonderful.....

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  2. Found your blog on the 12 Tomatoes FB group and this looks really great! Definitely have to try before the end of the week.

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